Our mother of pearl jewellery boxes and craft are all handmade individually by artisan. It requires highly sophisticated skills to extract mother of pearl from shells to create patterns, inlaid mother of pearl into engraved wooden surface, finish with lacquerwork to complete the whole process by 100% manual work. Mother of pearl are from shells of abalone, various shellfish, sea whelk which have mother of pearl pigments.
There are 2 major ways of preparing mother of pearl to use as materials.
1. Carve the pieces of pattern off the shells after soak shells of abalones (or other type of shells) in the water to soften the texture of shells. And then lift 0.3 cm - 0.5cm thin layer of shells to use or grind the shell surface by stone sharpener.
2. Cut the panel of shells into thin slices as thin as thread, and then past onto the wooden surface to create patterns such oriental grotesque plants, flowers, landscapes, dragon, cranes, peacocks, orchids, etc like embroidery. This methods requires extreme skills and experiences to create immaculate patterns.
Inlaying lacquer with mother-of-pearl has a well-Known Korean speciality for centuries and remains a popular luxury item in Korea until today. Lacquerware is produced by plastering hemp cloth on wooden objects and applying numerous coats of lacquer mixed with charcoal powder and rice glue. When dry, the surface is ground smooth before it is carved and inlaid with pieces of shell. After the inlaying, the surface is lacquered and ground repeatedly to obtain a smooth, lustrous surface. Repeat of lacquer application is essential as good lacquerwork can prolong the life of the goods, enhance durability of surface of crafts. Lacquer get harden at the temperature of 25 - 30C, humidity at 75 -85%, not just by evaporation. Therefore, it requires right environment for lacquerwork process. Once lacquer is settled, it become resistant to electricity, humidity, corrosion. Most of our jewellery boxes finished with good lacquerwork for durability, not to mention gorgeous look.
Source of photos : Hanart, Doore Art
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